Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Humanities and Social Sciences

Kinds of Islam

  • political islam

  • Selected Abstracts

    Islam and CSR: a study of the compatibility between the tenets of Islam, the UN Global Compact and the development of social, human and natural capital

    John Zinkin
    Abstract Previous research has found that Muslims score elements that are assumed to matter in determining socially responsible business behaviour less highly than people of other religions. This paper looks at whether the tenets of Islam are the reason for this lower score by comparing and contrasting the UN Global Compact's ten principles with those of Islam in the affected areas. In so doing, the paper reconstructs the principles according to their impact on social, human and natural capital and explores whether Islam is supportive of responsible behaviour in these three areas. The paper concludes that, with the possible exception of Islam's focus on personal responsibility and non-recognition of the corporation as a legal person, which could undermine the concept of corporate responsibility, there is no divergence between the tenets of the religion and the principles of the UN Global Compact. Focusing on this convergence of values could help avert the threatened ,clash of civilizations'. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment. [source]

    Islam In Our Times: A Determined Moslem Moderate Emerges from the Shadows

    CROSSCURRENTS, Issue 2 2008
    Zeina M. Barakat

    Purity, Soul Food, and Sunni Islam: Explorations at the Intersection of Consumption and Resistance

    Carolyn Rouse
    ABSTRACT Contemporary African American followers of Sunni Islam are self-consciously articulating a form of eating that they see as liberating them from the heritage of slavery, while also bringing them into conformity with Islamic notions of purity. In so doing, they participate in arguments about the meaning of "soul food," the relation between "Western" materialism and "Eastern" spirituality, and bodily health and its relation to mental liberation. Debates within the African American Muslim community show us how an older anthropological concern with food taboos can be opened up to history and to the experience of the past reinterpreted in terms of the struggles of the present. [source]

    Christian God-Talk While Listening to Atheists, Pluralists, and Muslims

    DIALOG, Issue 2 2007
    Ted Peters
    Abstract: In the global conversation over religious ideas, a de facto debate is raging between atheism, pluralism, and Islam. Pluralism respects the claim of every religion. Atheism respects the claim of no religion. Islam respects the claim of its own religion. How should a Christian theologian construct a doctrine of God that benefits from listening to this conversation yet stresses what is important in the gospel, namely, that the God of Jesus Christ is gracious in character? What is recommended here is to (1) investigate the truth question; (2) avoid putting God in the equations; (3) affirm what is essential; and (4) practice charity. [source]

    Religious Persecution: And What To Do About It

    DIALOG, Issue 2 2002
    John Hilary Martin
    Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, and other religions can all be found in geographically diverse Indonesia. Adding to this layered society are many different ethnic groups, political groups, and socio,economic groups. The joining of all these factors led to different communities forming adats,religio,customary agreements. When talking about "religious persecution" in Indonesia, all of these factors must be taken into account. Even so, it would be extremely naive to think that religious belief is a peripheral motivation for violence. This article explores a method by which religious scholars, leaders, and communities can curtail religious persecution in Indonesia; the method includes: personal encounter; discussion of the scholarly agenda; a public engagement through dialogue that leads to commitment; and finally, the appeal of prayer and ritual. [source]


    ECONOMIC AFFAIRS, Issue 3 2010
    Benedikt Koehler
    Islamic societies may appear unsuitable catalysts for fostering individual enterprise and institutional innovation. This view is challenged by examination of the evolution of charities in early Islam, the so-called waqf. Mohammed's prescription of providing alms engendered an extensive and varied range of charitable institutions. One example is the creation of Islam's earliest centres of higher learning, madrasahs. Key concepts of Common Law, such as trusts, may have copied Islamic legal concepts; the constitutions of the earliest colleges of Oxford and Cambridge universities replicated the design of charitable madrasahs. [source]


    ECONOMIC AFFAIRS, Issue 2 2009
    Azhar Aslam
    This paper examines rights to property accorded to women in Islam under direct injunctions and compares it with the state of these rights in present Muslim societies. It argues that the correct application of law will not only materially improve the status of women in Muslim societies and guarantee them economic security, it will also bring economic prosperity to such societies directly. [source]

    Political Islam and Foreign Policy in Europe and the United States

    Elizabeth Shakman Hurd
    This paper is about the epistemological underpinnings of European and American foreign policy toward political Islam. European and American approaches to political Islam rely upon commonly held secular assumptions about religion and politics that have significant effects on foreign policy in Europe and the United States. Secularist epistemology produces an understanding of "normal politics" that lends a particular coloring to the politics of Muslim-majority societies. These secularist understandings affect foreign policy in two ways: first, the appearance of Islam in politics is equated with fundamentalism and intolerance, and second, the forms and degrees of separation between Islam and politics that do exist in contemporary Muslim-majority societies either do not appear at all or appear as ill-fitting imitations of a Western secular ideal. Rather than a backlash against modernity or a return to tradition, political Islam is a modern language of politics that challenges and, at times, overturns fundamental assumptions about religion and politics embedded in Western forms of secularism. [source]


    ABSTRACT. This article examines the dramatic changes brought to English townscapes by Islam, Hinduism, and Sikhism. These "new" religions have arrived with the large-scale immigration and subsequent natural growth of the minority ethnic populations of Great Britain since the 1950s. The article traces the growth and distribution of these populations and religions, as well as the development of their places of worship from front-room prayer rooms to cathedral-scale buildings. It explores the way in which the British planning process, dedicated to preserving the traditional, has engaged with the exotic. [source]

    The Place of Islam in the Geography of Religion: Trends and Intersections

    Richard Gale
    This article reviews recent geographical research on Islam and Muslim identities. In the wake of the events of 11 September 2001, the forms taken by public debate surrounding Muslim communities and societies have been manifold and not always edifying. In the present political climate, where public attitudes to a particular suite of issues are often as misinformed as they are deeply held, the need for academics to furnish insights born out of robust research is acute. While the responses of academics to debates coalescing around Muslim communities and identities have emanated predominantly from religious studies, sociology and anthropology, geographers, with their attention to the spatial components inherent to the articulation of social identities, are making an increasingly significant contribution to our knowledge in this field. This article reviews this contribution, focusing on four areas in which geographical research on Islam has been most pronounced: Muslim residential segregation and ,community cohesion'; the relationship between Islamic dress codes and spatial context in the articulation of Muslim gender identities; the contestation of space that has attended the architectural expression of Muslim identity in urban landscapes and the spatial politics embedded in the construction of Muslim identities at simultaneously national and transnational scales. While the predominant focus is therefore geographical, the article also establishes linkages to other writings on the spatiality of Islam where relevant to the specific themes under discussion. [source]

    Nietzsche's Peace with Islam: My Enemy's Enemy is my Friend

    Ian Almond
    This article examines the many references in Nietzsche's work to Islam and Islamic cultures, and situates them in the general context of his thought. Nietzsche's praise of Islam as a ,ja,sagende semitische Religion', his admiration for Hafiz, his appreciation of Muslim Spain, his belief in the essentially life,affirming character of Islam, not only spring from a desire to find a palatable Other to Judaeo,Christian,European modernity, but also comment on how little Nietzsche actually knew about the cultures he so readily appropriated in his assault on European modernity. Nietzsche's negative comments on Islam , his generic dismissal of Islam with other religions as manipulative thought systems, his depiction of Mohammed as a cunning impostor, reveal in Nietzsche not only the same ambiguities towards Islam as we find towards Christ or Judaism, but also a willingness to use the multiple identities of Islam for different purposes at different moments in his work. Noch eine letzte Frage: Wenn wir von Jugend an geglaubt hätten, daß alles Seelenheil von einem Anderen als Jesus ist, ausfließe, etwa von Muhamed, ist es nicht sicher, daß wir derselben Segnungen theilhaftig geworden wären? Letter to Elisabeth Nietzsche, 11 June 1865 [source]

    Consuming the transnational family: Indonesian migrant domestic workers to Saudi Arabia

    GLOBAL NETWORKS, Issue 1 2006
    In this article, which is based on field work in a migrant-sending community in West Java, I focus on migrant women's narratives of transnational migration and employment as domestic workers in Saudi Arabia. I contribute to the literature on gender and transnational migration by exploring migrants' consumption desires and practices as reflective not only of commoditized exchange but also of affect and sentiment. In addition, I show in detail how religion and class inflect low-income women's narrations of morally appropriate mothering practices. In conclusion, I suggest that interpreting these debates from the ground up can contribute towards understanding the larger struggles animating the Indonesian state's contemporary relationships with women and Islam. [source]

    Democracy, Islam and Dialogue: The Case of Turkey

    Bora Kanra
    The November 2002 general elections in Turkey produced an Islamic-leaning government, supported by one of the biggest majorities, bringing the relationship between Islam and democracy under scrutiny. This paper examines the nature of this relationship and the current political situation in Turkey. It argues that Turkey's long-running aspiration for democratization has now a reasonable chance of success. This argument is supported by the findings of a Q study, conducted in Turkey during the 2002 election campaign, indicating strong support for dialogue, particularly within the Turkish Muslim community. Yet, it will also argue that turning this possibility into a success depends on the implementation of the right deliberative framework. Habermas's discourse theory of democracy provides the essentials for this. However, particularly in the context of a divided society, like Turkey, it has to be complemented with a better emphasis on deliberation as a social learning process, as in Dryzek's theory of discursive democracy. [source]

    The Islamic View and the Christian View of the Crusades: A New Synthesis

    HISTORY, Issue 310 2008
    Conventional wisdom maintains that the Islamic world and western Christendom held two very different views of the crusades. The image of warfare between Islam and Christendom has promoted the idea that the combative instincts aroused by this conflict somehow produced discordant views of the crusades. Yet the direct evidence from Islamic and Christian sources indicates otherwise. The self-view of the crusades presented by contemporary Muslim authors and the self-view of the crusades presented by crusading popes are not in opposition to each other but are in agreement with each other. Both interpretations place the onset of the crusades ahead of their accepted historical debut in 1095. Both interpretations point to the Norman conquest of Islamic Sicily (1060,91) as the start of the crusades. And both interpretations contend that by the end of the eleventh century the crusading enterprise was Mediterranean-wide in its scope. The Islamic view of the crusades is in fact the enantiomorph (mirror-image) of the Christian view of the crusades. This article makes a radical departure from contemporary scholarship on the early crusading enterprise because it is based on the direct evidence from Islamic and Christian sources. The direct evidence offers a way out of the impasse into which crusade history has fallen, and any attempt at determining the origin and nature of crusading without the support of the direct evidence is doomed to failure. [source]

    Islam in Northern Mozambique: A Historical Overview

    Liazzat Bonate
    This article is a historical overview of two issues: first, that of the dynamics of Islamic religious transformations from pre-Portuguese era up until the 2000s among Muslims of the contemporary Cabo Delgado, Nampula, and to a certain extent, Niassa provinces. The article argues that historical and geographical proximity of these regions to East African coast, the Comoros and northern Madagascar meant that all these regions shared a common Islamic religious tradition. Accordingly, shifts with regard to religious discourses and practices went in parallel. This situation began changing in the last decade of the colonial era and has continued well into the 2000s, when the so-called Wahhabis, Sunni Muslims educated in the Islamic universities of the Arab world brought religious outlook that differed significantly from the historical local and regional conceptions of Islam. The second question addressed in this article is about relationships between northern Mozambican Muslims and the state. The article argues that after initial confrontations with Muslims in the sixteenth century and up until the last decade of the colonial era, the Portuguese rule pursued no concerted effort in interfering in the internal Muslim religious affairs. Besides, although they occupied and destroyed some of the Swahili settlements, in particular in southern and central Mozambique, other Swahili continued to thrive in northern Mozambique and maintained certain independence from the Portuguese up until the twentieth century. Islam there remained under the control of the ruling Shirazi clans with close political, economic, kinship and religious ties to the Swahili world. By establishing kinship and politico-economic ties with the ruling elites of the mainland in the nineteenth century, these families were also instrumental in expanding Islam into the hinterland. Only at the beginning of the twentieth century, the Portuguese rule took full control of the region as a result of military conquests of the ,effective occupation', and imposed new legal and administrative colonial system, called Indigenato, impacting Muslims of northern Mozambique to a great extent. After the independence in 1975, and especially since 1977, the post-independence Frelimo government adopted militant atheism and socialist Marxism, which was short-lived and was abolished in 1983 owing to popular resistance and especially, because of government's perception that its religious policies were fuelling the opposition groups to take arms and join the civil war. The 1980s and 1990s were marked by an acute rivalry and conflicts between the two emerging national umbrella Islamic organizations, the Islamic Council and the Islamic Congress, each representing largely pro-Sufi and anti-Sufi positions. In the 2000s, these organizations became overshadowed by new and more dynamic organizations, such as Ahl Al-Sunna. [source]

    The Ethics and Practice of Islamic Medieval Charity

    Yaacov Lev
    Charity is deeply embedded in the religious thought and teachings of the three monotheistic religions. This article, while focusing on medieval Islam, is set in a wider framework with references to both Jewish and Christian parallels. Three main topics are examined: the religious meaning of charity, the social and political ramifications of almsgiving, and the impact of the institutional form of charity (the pious endowment system, waqf pl. awqaf) on Muslim medieval society. In the course of this examination, the article deals with the motives and attitudes of the donors (mainly people of the ruling class and the wealthy) and with the recipients of charity (the poor as well as the learned class). The article equally provides an overview of the charitable institutions and functions that existed in Muslim medieval societies. [source]

    Islam, Slavery and Jihad in West Africa

    James Searing
    Modernist readings of Islam exist in different forms, from the Orientalist to the Islamist, but they agree in defining Islam by looking back to the founding period of the Prophet and his immediate successors. Muslim reformers undertook this step to cut out centuries of commentary and precedent that they blamed for the stagnation of the Muslim world, but their influence is now so pervasive that it distorts historical interpretations of Muslim thought by imposing modernist interpretations that erase past debates about contentious issues such as jihad and slavery. This article challenges the assumptions of this modernist consensus by exploring past debates about slavery and jihad in West Africa from 1600 to 1900, and exploring the diversity of positions defended by West African Muslims. For heuristic purposes, these are defined as those of the revolutionary, the jurist, and the mystic. [source]

    Negotiating Islam: Conservatism, Splintered Authority and Empowerment in Urban Bangladesh

    IDS BULLETIN, Issue 2 2010
    Samia Huq
    Bangladesh has recently been seeing a rise in religiosity which has been treated as problematic, anti-secular and anti-progressive within the public sphere. Various writers describe this trend as having a disempowering effect on women and negating their self-expression. However, underlying these views is the assumption that the assertion of women's agency is not enough if it does not confront existing structures of relations. This article asks whether it is possible that in seeking changes in certain aspects of one's life, existing gender relations are not necessarily transformed, but indirectly challenged and reconfigured? The conclusion suggests that rather than a polarisation of the secular and religious ways of living most people are in fact in between, negotiating between the two camps, and borrowing ideas and ways from both. [source]

    Muslim selves and the American body politic: placing major Nidal Malik Hasan's case in a broader socio-historical context

    Kambiz Ghaneabassiri
    Abstract In the past two decades, US wars in Muslim-majority countries along with Muslim militants' attacks on the United States have raised questions about the place of Muslims in America's multicultural society. Attempts to configure the place of Muslim selves in American body politic have focused primarily on the nature of Islam and its relation to American interests rather than on an analysis of the political policies that have shaped our times. This privileging of religio-cultural explanations of US relations with the Muslim world has engendered the presumption that all Muslims are suspect unless they prove themselves otherwise. Major Nidal Malik Hasan's case, whatever his personal psychological condition, is an example of the way in which attempts at providing a religio-cultural solution to a political problem has placed the burden of bridging the gap between American multicultural ideals and American policies that view Muslims as suspect on the back of individual American Muslim selves. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Transforming aggressive conflict in political and personal contexts

    Andrew Samuels
    Abstract The author begins by trying to imagine different models of politics applicable to Western societies. He reflects on the "state we are in" and asks if our present condition of political rupture could ever become political rapture. He asks whether it is possible for citizens to remove themselves from the abusive relationships with heroic, macho leaders. Instead, he states, we might ask where we will find new kinds of leaders who will be "good-enough". We will need such leaders if we are to manage the staggeringly high levels of conflict and aggression afflicting the political world today. The author suggests that we urgently explore innovative ways to manage conflict in political contexts using new psychological ideas about men, fathers and violence. Finally, he communicates what he has learned from Islam about some hidden aspects of political conflict. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    The psychology and ideology of an islamic terrorist leader: Usama bin Laden

    Maria T. Miliora
    Abstract This essay presents what the author proposes are the motivational bases for Usama bin Laden's avowed "holy war" against the United States. Bin Laden's biography is presented against the backdrop of the recent political history of the Middle Eastern Islamic world including the emergence of radical Islam. In assessing bin Laden's personality from the data that are available, three features are prominent: archaic narcissistic states (expressed as conscious and unconscious fantasies), paranoia and a Manichean sense of reality. It is shown that his ideology derives from his personality and his perception of and reaction to political events involving the United States and nations in the Middle East. The findings suggest that bin Laden imagines that he is walking in the shoes of the prophet Muhammad as he engages in an apocalyptic war to restore Islam as a potent force in the world. Usama bin Laden is compared to Hitler as a charismatic, messianic leader. Copyright © 2004 Whurr Publishers Ltd. [source]

    Consumer attitudes towards debt in an islamic country: managing a conflict between religious tradition and modernity?

    Alhassan G. Abdul-MuhminArticle first published online: 10 APR 200
    Abstract Saudi Arabia is an important country in the Islamic world, and Islam prohibits the payment and receipt of interest, a key component of modern commercial bank loans. Yet the levels of commercial bank lending in the country for private non-commercial purposes has been rising sharply for the past decade. This study seeks an explanation for this increase by examining the nature of consumer attitudes towards debt in the country, and whether the increasing levels of consumer debt can be explained by existing positive debt attitudes. Using data from a convenience sample of consumers in the major cities of the country, the study finds general debt attitudes to be surprisingly positive, though tempered by the consumption purpose for which the debt is acquired. However, the positive attitudes are unrelated to actual debt acquisition. Rather, socio-demographic differences in attitudes are similar to those reported in the literature. Attitudes are generally more positive among young, highly educated Saudi males than other socio-demographic groups. This suggests a possible struggle to manage a conflict between the Islamic prohibition of interest-based borrowing and demands of the modern economy. [source]

    Global Religious Transformations, Political Vision and Christian Witness,

    Vinoth Ramachandra
    From the nineteenth-century onwards religion has been, and continues to be, an important resource for nationalist, modernizing movements. What was true of Protestant Christianity in the world of Victorian Britain also holds for the nationalist transformations of Hindu Neo-Vedanta, Theravada Buddhism, Shintoism and Shi'ite Islam in the non-Western world. Globalizing practises both corrode inherited cultural and personal identities and, at the same time, stimulate the revitalisation of particular identities as a way of gaining more influence in the new global order. However, it would be a gross distortion to identify the global transformations of Islam, and indeed of other world religions, with their more violent and fanatical forms. The globalization of local conflicts serves powerful propaganda purposes on all sides. If global Christian witness in the political arena is to carry integrity, this essay argues for the following responses, wherever we may happen to live: (a) Learning the history behind the stories of ,religious violence' reported in the secular media; (b) Identifying and building relationships with the more self-critical voices within the other religious traditions and communities, so avoiding simplistic generalizations and stereotyping of others; (c) Actively engaging in the political quest for truly participatory democracies that honour cultural and religious differences. In a hegemonic secular culture, as in the liberal democracies of the West, authentic cross-cultural engagement is circumvented. There is a militant secularist ,orthodoxy' that is as destructive of authentic pluralism as its fundamentalist religious counterpart. The credibility of the global Church will depend on whether Christians can resist the totalising identities imposed on them by their nation-states and/or their ethnic communities, and grasp that their primary allegiance is to Jesus Christ and his universal reign. [source]

    Global Liberalism Versus Political Islam: Competing Ideological Frameworks in International Politics1

    Fiona B. Adamson
    First page of article [source]

    Faith Matters: Christianity, Islam, and Global Politics

    Andrew Chesnut
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Islam and Human Rights: A Case of Deceptive First Appearances

    Daniel Price
    It is a common belief that Islamic-based government, when serving as an ideological foundation for government, facilitates the poor protection of human rights. However, most studies of the relationship between Islam and individual rights have been at the theoretical and anecdotal levels. In this article, I test the relationship between Islam and human rights across a sample of 23 predominately Muslim countries and a control group of non-Muslim developing nations, while controlling for other factors that have been shown to affect human rights practices. I found that the influence of Islamic political culture on government has a statistically insignificant relationship with the protection of human rights. [source]

    Religious Expression amongst Adults with Intellectual Disabilities

    Susannah Turner
    Background Although religion is an important part of many people's lives, little is known about the role of religion in the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. Method Semi-structured face-to-face interviews were conducted with 29 people with intellectual disabilities of a range of faiths (various Christian denominations, Islam and Hindu dharma). Participants were asked about the meaning of religion for them, the role of religion in their lives and the attitudes of others towards religious expression. All interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and thematically analysed. Results Participants expressed strong religious identities. Prayer was a particularly popular form of religious expression, with other forms of religious expression often hindered by services or faith agencies. Some individuals expressed how their religious faith was not recognized by services or faith agencies. Conclusions Services and faith agencies need to recognize the importance of religion in the lives of many people with intellectual disabilities, and support religious expression in this group. [source]

    Caring for patients of Islamic denomination: critical care nurses' experiences in Saudi Arabia

    ITU cert., Phil Halligan MSc
    Aim., To describe the critical care nurses' experiences in caring for patients of Muslim denomination in Saudi Arabia. Background., Caring is known to be the essence of nursing but many health-care settings have become more culturally diverse. Caring has been examined mainly in the context of Western cultures. Muslims form one of the largest ethnic minority communities in Britain but to date, empirical studies relating to caring from an Islamic perspective is not well documented. Research conducted within the home of Islam would provide essential truths about the reality of caring for Muslim patients. Design., Phenomenological descriptive. Methods., Six critical care nurses were interviewed from a hospital in Saudi Arabia. The narratives were analysed using Colaizzi's framework. Results., The meaning of the nurses' experiences emerged as three themes: family and kinship ties, cultural and religious influences and nurse,patient relationship. The results indicated the importance of the role of the family and religion in providing care. In the process of caring, the participants felt stressed and frustrated and they all experienced emotional labour. Communicating with the patients and the families was a constant battle and this acted as a further stressor in meeting the needs of their patients. Conclusions., The concept of the family and the importance and meaning of religion and culture were central in the provision of caring. The beliefs and practices of patients who follow Islam, as perceived by expatriate nurses, may have an effect on the patient's health care in ways that are not apparent to many health-care professionals and policy makers internationally. Relevance to clinical practice., Readers should be prompted to reflect on their clinical practice and to understand the impact of religious and cultural differences in their encounters with patients of Islam denomination. Policy and all actions, decisions and judgments should be culturally derived. [source]

    Removal of amateur blue-black tattoos in Arabic women of skin type (III,IV) with Q-switched alexandrite laser

    Iqbal A Bukhari
    Summary Background and Objectives, Tattoos in Arabic society used to have a cosmetic importance on the face of females. These were usually amateur tattoos done by non-professional women in the tribe. Because Islam as a religion prohibited its practice and its application, people became concerned about removing the old tattoos by any means. Nowadays, laser is considered an effective method of tattoo removal. Here, we report our experience in the removal of tattoos in Arabic women of skin type III,IV using the Q-switched alexandrite laser. Study Design/Materials and Methods, Twenty female subjects aged 35,50 years from similar racial and ethnic background with amateur tattoos were treated using the Q-switched alexandrite laser. Fluence threshold was determined and a spot test was made. Q-switched alexandrite laser with a fluence range 4.0,7.5 J/cm2 (mean 6.05) was used at 6,12-week intervals. Total treatment numbers ranged from three to six sessions (mean 4.15) with single-pulse technique application. Results, More than 95% lightening was achieved in five patients after three to six sessions at fluence range of 6,7.5 J/cm2 and > 75% lightening in 10 subjects after three to six sessions of treatment at fluence range of 4,7.5 J/cm2. Pinpoint bleeding was observed in one case but no pigmentary alteration or scarring was seen. Conclusion, Tattoo pigment removal by Q-switched alexandrite laser is an effective method in skin type (III,IV) with minimal side effects, which gives high patient satisfaction. [source]

    Religion and the "Evil Empire",

    This paper provides an historiographical review of the rhetorical and historical sources for religious suspicion of empires and imperialism in the west. It begins with an analysis of Ronald Reagan's celebrated "evil empire" speech of March 1983, and traces its polemical roots to scriptural precedents, notably in the Book of Revelation, in which "empire" is equated with the unjust rule of Babylon. Some comparisons are made between the general use of religious ideologies to support imperial regimes in ancient and other, more modern, world empires including China and Islam. The final section considers the debate about the role of religion in supporting , or critiquing , modern, secularised empire states such as the second British Empire. The paper argues that it is not possible to understand the problematical relationship of religion and empire in modern societies without recognising the ongoing force of Christian polemic even when religious arguments have not specifically been invoked. [source]